Microtechnology-based in vitro models: Mimicking liver function and pathophysiology

Seung Yeon Lee, Donghyun Kim, Seung Hwan Lee, Jong Hwan Sung

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


The liver plays important roles in drug metabolism and homeostasis. The metabolism and biotransformation can not only affect the efficacy of drugs but also result in hepatotoxicity and drug-induced liver injury. Understanding the complex physiology of the liver and the pathogenetic mechanisms of liver diseases is essential for drug development. Conventional in vitro models have limitations in the ability to predict drug effects, due to the lack of physiological relevance. Recently, the liver-on-a-chip platform has been developed to reproduce the microarchitecture and in vivo environment of the liver. These efforts have improved the physiological relevance of the liver tissue used in the platform and have demonstrated its applicability to drug screening and disease models. In this review, we summarize the recent development of liver-on-a-chip models that closely mimic the in vivo liver environments and liver diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Article number041505
JournalAPL Bioengineering
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Dec 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by National Research Foundation of Korea, under Grant (Basic Research Lab, No. 2019R1A4A1025958); by the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy (MOTIE), Republic of Korea, under the Technology Innovation Program, Grant No. 20008414 (Development of intestine–liver–kidney multi-organ tissue chip mimicking absorption distribution metabolism excretion of drug); and by the Hongik University Research Fund. This work was also supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Education (No. 2018R1A6A1A03024231) and the Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT) (No. 2021R1F1A1062909). This work was supported by 2021 Hongik University Innovation Support Program Fund.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Bioengineering
  • Biophysics
  • Biomaterials
  • Biomedical Engineering


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